December 22, 2010

Packaging Whore: Faggy Foods (The XXXmas Edition)

by Kayoko Akabori

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PREFACE
Packaging Whore: Faggy Foods (by Anders)

I’ve been a serious holiday downer this year. Even though I really do not care for religion, ya’ll know I adore Jesus, and I have done nothing to celebrate the day of his birth thus far. No gifts, no cards, no love. Shame on me!

Anders asked me to fill in for him this week. He’s the CEO of Packaging Whore now, given his sharp eye for design and aesthetics. My own eyes have been failing me these days and I haven’t really been paying much attention to packaging. California has made me sleepy. And utterly unstylish. Jesus help me.

I took a deep breath and walked into Target yesterday– oh you know, that behemoth big box retailer with the bright red bulls-eye logo that dots the American landscape, having won over the shriveling hearts of millions of consumers young and old. How did they do it? Growing up, Target was just another drug store that also happened to sell uncool clothes and cds. Now it’s the only store left standing in my humble hometown of Cupertino.

It amazes me, that almighty Target. I bet Jesus has some stock it.

So there I was, in Target yesterday lost in a sea of hundreds of devastatingly unfashionable suburban shoppers, scurrying around looking for last-minute gifts. I was on a mission to find something awesome to write about for this column. After making my third lap around the store, I was getting discouraged. Then, the seas parted. The squeaky Christmas music stopped playing and the florescent lights dimmed. I felt a tap on my shoulder. Jesus, is that you?

Behold the holiday candy section:

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Sorry for the ugly iPhone pics, but LOOK AT THIS. Does this not excite you? Row upon row upon row of totally fabulous nastiness. Gross, iconic American sweets in hideous packaging. BINGO! I thought of Anders right away, namely his now-famous Faggy Foods post. Could I do a follow-up? Why I most certainly can try! (Sans his signature snide-homosexual-male perspective that we all know and love, but I’m gonna try my best to channel him here).

SOUR PATCH CANDY CANES

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Nasty! And those two little characters in the bottom left corner? So not cute. These candy canes remind me of a certain male anatomy I’ve seen throughout the years: skinny, limp and sour. They never get sweet like they advertise (sour, then sweet? ALL LIES). Jesus, do something about this epidemic please, I’ve put up with them for long enough. In 2011, Sour Patch Candy Canes nevermore!

(Wait, what was I talking about again? Blank face).

PRINTED FUN POP-TARTS (Gingerbread Naturally & Artificially Flavored)

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Anders swears this is a homosexual breakfast item, but ya’ll just need to keep your boys in your bed, and have HOT morning sex in your pink satin sheets instead. Then, have a cigarette for breakfast.

Skip this if the boy presents you with a Sour Patch Candy Cane. Go ahead and get your Pop-Tart.

Awww, but look at these designs printed on them…

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These are “limited edition” which gives the manufacturer reason to charge $4 a box for them. Gingerbread People shovel snow and snowboard, just like us! This is just so bizarre, and gets me thinking about what Americans consider “cute”. I mean these guys, like the Sour Patch characters are SO NOT CUTE.

DECORATE A COOKIE (4 Cookies and Icing Included)

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Ok, so this Santa could maybe, possibly be considered cute. Strip him of his belt, coat and hat and he could definitely pass for Jesus.

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But what mother in her godforesaken mind would allow her children to play with these florescent-hued packs of icing reminiscent of Toxic Terror!? Black? Neon pink? Red? Really?

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I’m all about letting kids get creative, but a hot pink Santa with jet black trim could really traumatize a young lad. Cue the Japanese salaryman’s fantasy of disco balls and chubby, fishnetted, hairy, pole-dancing Santas with hard-ons.

Slutty Hot Pink Santa Nation forever.

COLLABORATIVE AMERICAN CANDY BY CLOSET GAYS

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These caught my eye– manufacturers collaborating with iconic pop images to justify selling their candy for $2+ each. You’ve got Willy Wonka branded Gobstopper “Snowballs” and a Paul Frank Crunch bar. Will someone just shoot the fucking monkey already? No really though, both Willy Wonka and the Paul Frank monkey: Super Gay. But still in the closet? Or just asexual. You have to admit, Johnny Depp was the creepiest, most convincingly gay Willy ever!

M&Ms (Dark Chocolate)

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Here’s American candy packaging done right. A dark chocolate M&M vixen draped in fur and showing off her slender, shaven humanesque legs. So ridiculous. But it works! Out of all the M&M characters (different Xmas designs for different kinds: regular, peanut butter, almond, etc.), I picked this one up immediately. Love it– she’s like the Kelis of the M&M world. Her milkshake brings all the boys to the yard.

BLOW POP MINIS

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I saw these on my way out the door and went back and waited another 30 minutes in line for the register. I mean, I could NOT have a Faggy Foods post without Xmas Blow Pops, right?

But I just opened this up and these candies are individually bagged up. Where’s the stick?

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WHAT THE HELL WHERE IS THE STICK? How dare they?!?!?!?! It’s the end of an era.

Fucking blow me, Blow Pop. I’m so mad at you!

HOLIDAY HERSHEY’S KISSES

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An ode to the most perfectly packaged American candy out there– in name, in concept, in design. Genius. There are so many variations of them now– peanut butter, white chocolate, Irish Creme– but why fuck with a good thing? So classic and timeless.

SNOWMAN PEZ

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I bought this cause it’s like a hybrid of Anders and Yamahomo– dandy, colorful, clean-lines and classy. My two favorite Gay Snow Martians in the galaxy!!! I’ll be popping a Pez (like a Ritalin addict) for you all weekend.

Holiday hearts to all.

xxk

PS: I just realized that this is actually the very opposite of Anders’ original Faggy Foods post, at least in aesthetics and design. His stuff was way more pink and pop and cozy. Oops. So, this is officially the ANTI-Faggy-Faggy-Foods post. Enjoy.

9 Comments

  • yoko
    Posted December 22, 2010 at 11:56 pm

    I really enjoyed reading this and seeing all the pictures. Is the pink icing for Santa for his skin? Very weird.

  • Kayoko Akabori
    Posted December 23, 2010 at 2:45 am

    yoko, thank you always for your internet validation. it is lonely out here without it.

    yah the pink icing– so effing bizarre. i totally don’t understand that, or the black icing either???? images of Santa in leather abound.

    and i like it.

  • Anders
    Posted December 23, 2010 at 3:11 am

    I enjoy all posts on American candy, it’s so far out. Can’t believe the size of your stores – you could fit a Danish village in that Target!

    And I agree, this is actually rather a Toxic Terror post than faggy, only the blow pops and candy canes are kinda queer…

    Black icing just makes me wanna barf out loud!

  • Posted December 23, 2010 at 5:30 am

    Those are the most uncute gingerbread men I’ve ever seen. And I can’t believe they actually put ‘Printed Fun’ on the Pop Tarts package. So funny. Great post Kayoko. Had me laughing out loud:) But I wouldn’t mind some dark M&Ms!

  • Kayoko Akabori
    Posted December 23, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    Yah, bottom line is that American candy packaging is SUPER LAME, so not cute, and not very fun.

    Humph.

    And just so I get this right the next time, Anders, what exactly constitutes “queer candy”?

  • yoko
    Posted December 23, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    I LOVE Reeses and Twix packaging though. The logos are so classic, very American.

  • Kayoko Akabori
    Posted December 23, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    Ok yah, Snickers too, you’re right.

    Or is it just the nostalgia that overwhelms us, putting us back at 6 when we were counting all of our Halloween candy after a night of Trick or Treating?

    So basically, candy packaging pre-1980s is super cool, but these days, can you think of anything great?

  • Anders
    Posted December 23, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    Kayoko: a gay food is when it’s feminine and weirdly/brutally sexual at the same time.
    Or maybe trying to be cute, but taking it too far so it ends up being camp.

    Or maybe when the manufacturers think they’re selling to a certain crowd (say, tween girls) but in reality they ship loads off to DINK couples (that’s “Double Income No Kids” for you breeders who are not in the know) or SHLAMH’s (Single Homo Living At Mom’s House)

    I just made that last one up.

  • Kayoko Akabori
    Posted December 23, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    SHLAMH FOREVER.

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